Usage example with a context:

Clauses combine to form the entire SQL statement, which combines keywords with data to form a database query. Since you cannot have an actual conversation with the database like you would a person, keywords, statements, and clauses help you convey what you need to accomplish.

I asked an English native speaker and he said that you don't really need with between you and a person because it's kind of implied from the earlier with and we have to assume that it's there. Although that all makes sense, I still have a real hard time reading that sentence without saying with in my mind. It just doesn't sound right to my ears. What do you think?

  • Your question reminds me of this quote: Two men look out through the same bars: One sees the mud, and one the stars. –Frederick Langbridge, 1849-1923. (Note the last part.) Dec 10, 2014 at 1:26
  • Right. A verb is omitted in your example. In my case, I have no problem that "have" has been omitted but I do have a problem with why "with" is not repeated. Dec 10, 2014 at 2:14
  • A lot more than the word "with" is omitted. :)
    – F.E.
    Dec 10, 2014 at 3:18

1 Answer 1


Let's see how it goes if we rewrite the verb-phrase have an actual conversation with :

You cannot converse with a database as you can ... a person.

Euphony wants "with" to be repeated there too, though the statement is intelligible without it. Is the statement grammatical without "with"? Probably. The percentage of native speakers who would omit the second "with" is quite large.

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